LeRoy William ‘Roy’ Rupert of Niles

Published 9:34 am Friday, March 8, 2019

Oct. 13, 1917 — March 4, 2019

LeRoy William “Roy” Rupert of Niles, died peacefully at 7:27 p.m. on Monday, March 4, 2019, at the Pine Ridge Rehabilitation and Nursing Center in Stevensville, Michigan following a brief illness, having attained the remarkable age of 101 years.

He was born on Oct. 13, 1917, in Niles, to Raymond and Minnie Bertha (Block) Rupert.

LeRoy William “Roy” Rupert

He was graduated from Niles High School in 1936, and attended engineering courses at the University of Notre Dame. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy in 1943, using his engineering aptitude to serve as an aviation metalsmith, and was honorably discharged as a veteran of World War II.

Back in Niles, he was employed as a manufacturing engineer for 48 years at the former Niles plant of Tyler Refrigeration, retiring in 1985. In retirement, he provided engineering services to Bangor Cooler Company in Hartford, Michigan.

Roy was a member of Saint Paul’s Lutheran Church in Niles. He enjoyed hunting and fishing locally, including fishing on lakes Michigan and Erie from his boat, “Roy’s Joy.” He enjoyed personally maintaining and landscaping his front yard to golf course precision.

He adopted his faithful yellow lab, “Buff” from a shelter, and they were inseparable, sharing a special relationship.

On Oct. 3, 1941, in Niles, he married the former Jane Adeline Bixby with whom he celebrated the remarkable 59th anniversary of their wedding prior to her death on Nov. 25, 2000. They were also sadly preceded in death by their son, Robert “Butch” Rupert, who died in 1966 as a victim of a motor vehicle accident while attending college in Texas. He was also preceded in death by a beloved aunt and uncle, Herbert and Eleanor Block, and by Jane’s siblings, Ruth Covington, Carl Bixby, and Paul Bixby, and a nephew, Dan Bixby.

Roy is survived by his cousin, William Block and great-nephew, Bryan (Jennifer) Bixby who had all worked together to provide his care. Also surviving are nieces and nephews including Paul (Patricia) Bixby, Carl (Karen) Bixby, Janet Ann (&George) Shafer, Mary (David) Hand, and Patricia (Mrs. Dan) Bixby; and many other relatives for whom he was “Uncle Roy.”

The funeral service for LeRoy Rupert will be at noon on Monday, March 11, 2019, at Saint Paul’s Lutheran Church, 1340 Sycamore St., Niles, with the Rev. Joseph T. Liss of the church officiating.

Committal will follow at Mission Hills, and will conclude with the Full Military Honors by the United States Navy Honor Guard and American Legion Post #51 of Buchanan, Michigan.

The family will receive relatives and friends beginning at 11 a.m. on Monday at the church. Contributions in memory of Roy Rupert may be made to Saint Paul’s Lutheran Church, stpaulsniles.org. Arrangements were made at the Halbritter-Wickens Funeral Home, 615 East Main Street in Niles. Online condolences may be left at: halbritterwickens.com.